According to Marta Guerreiro, Regional Secretary for Energy, Environment and Tourism, “we are the first and only archipelago in the world with this certification, we are the only region of Portugal with this certification, we are at the forefront.”
The Azores have obtained the exclusive GSTC certification (still only applied in eight countries and 13 regions worldwide) following a two-year audit and evaluation process in order to meet the goals of the more than 40 criteria established by GSTC.
These criteria involve a number of environmental indicators, but also social or economic impacts generated by tourism in the region, including unemployment rates.
The return that tourism gives to the local population is one of the most valued indicators in this GSTC certification, which undertakes to make a periodic assessment of the goals assumed by the Azores after the award of the sustainable tourism destination seal.
Source: Vida Extra Expresso